Saturday, November 30, 2013

Hunger Games

Watched the latest installment at the 9:00 showing in Redwood City last night. Packed house... clearly they have touched a nerve with this franchise.

I thought it was, like the first installment... not bad! As with the first, there was too much time wasted preening and fawning over the fashion elements, but then again, I am not unaware of the core demographic for this film. This one drags a bit in the middle during the buildup to the "game," which then actually goes by a little too quickly. There is a pack of vicious baboons (nice touch) and a poisonous fog (yawn).

The plot, if you are one of the four or five people who have not seen the movie, revolves around a smart, strong, skilled, and compassionate young woman who reluctantly assumes the role of leader in a rebellion against a tyrannical government led by Donald Sutherland... What's not to like about that? Jennifer Lawrence is just about perfect for the role. The movie also seems to have provided work for a number of male actors who are underemployed or who may just have moved into the coasting phase of their careers... in addition to the aforementioned Sutherland, we have Harrelson, Hoffman, Kravitz, Tucci, and Wright.

My two main complaints about the movie are (1) Not one of the insipid young male leads/ love interests is a worthy match for Katniss in any dimension, either as character or actor; and (2) There's no way a drunken Woody Harrelson could physically subdue our hero, even after the trauma of having nearly electrocuted herself saving the day... but I suppose when the main message of the movie is that men fuck everything up, it pays to offer a conciliating gesture or two to the masculine ego...

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